Tuesday, February 23, 2010

BEACH BASEBALL AND BINGO AT BLAIR WHILE SEARCHING FOR SOME OFFENSE

On the left side of the diamond tonight are the 23rd ranked UCLA Bruins who scored 40 runs in three easy weekend wins. On the right side is the 2010 Dirtbag baseball machine, a model that the skipper Mike Weathers suspects has a clutch built by Toyota and may be recalled at any time. “We simply aren’t getting the clutch hits” the skipper mumbled, finding the Niner offensive mileage underwhelming. In the first three games, 25 Dirtbags were left on base, over half of them in scoring position, just three earned runs and, as has been pointed out by others, a once-feared running game that is upside down (one stolen base and three caught stealing.)

The good news, in large part, the defense has been okay. Tonight Buck rolls out promising pitcher Eddie Magallon, the pride of Paramount High, the lad who picked up 25 wins games in his four seasons on South Downey Avenue. Arguably the best of the newcomers Eddie had a sparkling 8-1 record and 1.21 ERA in his junior year and 7-3, 2.10 ERA last spring. I’ve got clothes that weigh more than he does. The opponents offense posted a .398 team batting average, while the pitching staff logged a 3.00 ERA, totaling 42 strikeouts and five walks in 27.0 innings. UCLA outscored the opposition, 40-10, and registered at least 10 runs or more in each contest although the competition was fairly lightweight. The Bruins will start senior right-hander Garett Claypool who owned the Beach last season totaling 15 strikeouts in 10 innings. Entering his sixth season as UCLA's head baseball coach, John Savage has established the Bruins as a top national competitor. UCLA has finished third in the Pac-10 Conference each of the last four seasons under Savage's guidance.

NOTES ON MY NAPKIN—Maybe you can officially call Troy Buckley coach in waiting but insiders say the new title is a bureaucratic maneuver to up Bucks pay and, if and when, make his move to head coach easy, sort of like Pete Manarino to Kim Sowder, George Allen to Willie Brown, Joe Harrington to Seth Greenberg and of course Dave Snow to Mike Weathers...last year Andy Rojo was the #1 assistant and in charge of
but now TB has what he needs too…now how does a two game losing streak feel? well the up-Titan skipper Dave Serrano is now on a three game suspension for spilling or at least bumping into umpire Larry Randall….the OC papers said Serrano appeared to make belly-to-belly contact with Randall, who stumbled as he turned away and fell to the ground in short right-center, and then maybe more contact after the ejection

As much as the Long Beach tennis set enjoys their new digs with banners fluttering, sensational scoreboard and a sparkling new sound system, the program will have their eyes on Indianapolis Thursday with the hopeful resolution of the eligibility question about their best player, Slovakian slugger Klaudia Malenovska. Klaudia played a bit in a country neighboring her native Slovakia for a small time women’s club team and accepted a few hundred dollars to take care of travel expenses…a Saturday feature is the pre-match dedication of Court One in the name of all-world netter Hannah Grady…Surprise of the college baseball season has been the fast start by Oregon who took three decades off loved their CA stops, comfortable wins over the big names from Fullerton and Long Beach State plus a laugher LMU on Monday…next four games in Hawaii …49er fans who chafe a bit about being in a mid major conference like the Big West can at least dine with the silver spoon set in baseball this year with 17 games against PAC 10 opponents…next year the Niners will have 21 games against the PAC 10...hoop head scratching…last year women’s basketball was so buried in the Big West basement they missed an invite to the conference tournament…a few seniors depart and four returnees leave the program and what happens? The Jody Wynn’s (8-5) are on the verge of finishing in the top four and earning a first round bye…The men, (isn’t it darkest before the dawn) slumped out of town last weekend after an on court lashing by first place Pacific (74-52) and a coaches locker-room lashing (1:35)…Daddy Dan however found the cure back at his alma mater, the U of Idaho…his Beach kids, 8 point underdogs, won by 11..UCI volleys LB in the Mid tomorrow and Davis and Pacific are the Beach hoop foes this weekend, women hosting Thursday and Saturday and the men visiting on those same dates.—DR. DAN